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Tanya and Todd’s Sweet Mountain Wedding

by | Australia - Victoria, Bride, Inspired Weddings,


Tanya and Todd

I love today’s wedding – taking place up in the mountain ranges near Melbourne (well Mount Macedon to be precise). It’s full of Tanya and Todd’s personality and homemade touches that honour the natural environment.

Tanya explains how she met Todd. “We met at 15 in the local supermarket. He was the dairy boy and I was a check out chick. We flirted for years, but Todd is quite shy. After 4 years, he finally got the courage to ask his cousin, to ask my sister for my number. After a few dates we were inseparable. ”

Photos today are by Robert Hock Photography. I love Robert’s style – the relaxed images have a sensibility to them, a style that captured the mood, the details and created stunning memories.

Check back later this afternoon for an extra special treat made by the newlywed’s friends Claire and Justin!

Tanya and Todd kicked off their day with the stationery. Although it was made by a professional, they added their own handmade touches. “The invite itself was from Papermarc, the rest was hand stamped, tied, made and folded by me. Even down to making all those tiny blue envelopes and hand drawing the map. (School holidays has it’s advantages!)”

They couple paid homage to their family with special pieces of jewellery. Tanya recalls “I wore my Grandmother’s engagement ring for the day (which has a stone in it from her grandmother’s ring). Todd wore his great grandfathers cufflinks.”

Tanya says “My shoes were old ones I already had I bought from a market years ago. ( at least I knew they were comfy!)”

Brooke from Buds & Stems created Tanya’s bouquet “We asked for long stemmed, just picked look. Todd’s lovely cousin Sarah and her sister Melinda did our hair, My sister’s friend Jahi did our makeup.”

One of Tanya’s favourite moments was her walk down the aisle. “A highlight for me was walking down the aisle. Todd and I didn’t see each other before the day so it was a very exciting time to come around the corner. He was looking up at me eyes filled with love, the beautiful classical strings soared. It was magical.”

Tanya and Todd were married at Forest Glade Gardens in Mount Macedon. A quartet from The Baker Boys Band played Tanya down the aisle. “We walked down the aisle to Pachelbel’s canon in D. A childhood dream to have it played by a quartet! Soooooo wonderful.”

Tanya’s bridesmaids wore “Navy flowing dresses from Spurling. We found out my little sister was pregnant after buying them, good thing they were flowing, she still looked stunning in it!”. The groom and his groomsmen wore suits bought from Man To Man.

Tanya made sure she put her own touch on the day. “I love DIY and small details, so there was a lot included in our wedding. It started with our invitations, we got the actual invite printed, but the rest was handmade, the little blue envelopes were stamped and inside a hand drawn map, little doilies decorated the recycled information card, then it was all tied with string and finished with a button.  All of the signs took ages to saw, nail and paint in the shed, I was picked on a lot for bringing random pieces of wood home.

Our antique ring holder was relined and buffed up, I drew up a fingerprint tree, our registry chairs were spruced up and my wonderful friend Claire a helped me decorate the reception with gorgeous potted plants with flags.” The wedding cake was made by Nerina’s Cakes, a work colleague of Todd’s.

Tanya and Todd held their wedding at Roomba’s at Wooling Hill “Roomba’s is a great open space with a beautiful big window and large verandah. Unfortunately, the week after our wedding, it had a massive fire inside! So it out of business for now. We were so lucky to have our wedding before this happened!”

The reception was filled with little rustic touches made by Tanya and Todd. The Baker Boys provided a five piece band for the celebration. “We had our first dance to Ryan Adams’ version of Wonderwall. It was so special. Everyone just melted away and it was just us in the room for a while.”

Congratulations Tanya and Todd! Thank you for allowing us to share your wedding day on Polka Dot Bride! Thank you also to by Robert Hock Photography for sharing today’s images with us. Stay tuned, we have a very special extra treat from this wedding coming up in an hour!

Photos by Robert Hock Photography

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Nicola and Steven’s Chic Sydney Wedding

by | Australia - New South Wales, Bride, Inspired Weddings,


Nicola and Steven

While every love story has it’s fairytale moments, one that really struck me last year was the one I get to share with you today – the beautiful fairytale of Nicola and Steven. Nicola, a Sydney wedding florist (of Ruby & Joy) traveled to Scotland and upon her return announced her engagement. Nicola is a wedding professional I have always admired, not only for her sheer talent (hello beautiful florals!) but because she is always joyous and happy. So I couldn’t think of a nicer person to experience the magic of a fairytale love story than Nicole – Sydney’s wedding scene will certainly miss you dear one!

Nicola explains how her love story unfolded. “We met in2005 at a camp in Scotland but nothing happened then. But when I went back for a holiday in January 2010, I stayed at the camp for a few nights (Steven was the manager), and on my last night there he took me on a date. I didn’t think he was interested, and nothing happened. But the next day I went to Edinburgh, and he came through to spend the day with me. Nothing happened again, and I went to Europe for 7 days. On my way back from Paris, when I got to the station he was there waiting for me!He asked me to be his girlfriend that day, and we had 4 days together as a couple before I flew home to Australia. He was my first (and last!) boyfriend, first kiss, and only love. We were long distance for a year before he proposed in October 2010 in Australia.”

Photos today are by Michelle Fiona Photography. Michelle has captured the light and love of this relationship with such style – and the florals, oh how she’s captured the beautiful blooms! Such a feature of the wedding and such a part of Nicola.

Nicola says, “We had no theme as such, but I did love the raspberry and peach colours that we used as highlights throughout the stationery, bridesmaids’ outfits etc. So as we just picked everything we loved, everything was special!”

Nicola wore the French Floral Beaded Lace Gown from the Collette Dinnigan Snow White collection with earrings from Fletcher & Grace. One of her favourite memories was her grandmother’s homemade touches to her outfit. She recalls “My Nanna making my veil, garter and hair flower was so special to me.” Nicola’s hair was by Melanie Burnicle, and makeup by Casey Boniwell (0402 349 871).

Nicole’s bridesmaids wore blush coloured gowns from Portmans. “My bridesmaids were excellent, my 6 month pregnant maid of honour, sister Jillian, was and is my hero.”

Nicola and Steven were married at Church By The Bridge (St Johns Anglican). Nicola recalls “We walked in to ‘Hoppipolla’ sung by Sigur Ros, and walked out to ‘Pencil Full of Lead’ by Paolo Nutini. The first is a song that we had listened together lots, and was a beautiful musical piece. The words were in Icelandic, but it was still beautiful – I think it’s about gumboots! The second was a song that was in the first movie we saw together”.

Nicola says “We used the traditional vows but added a little bit on each at the end, which was a surprise on the day. It was wonderful having my Nanna and Pop and my friend El pray at the ceremony, my brother and my friend Madi read at the ceremony, and so many other friends involved, was wonderful.”

“There are so many special details from the day, but one of my favourites was when we were pronounced man and wife. It was amazing! And meant we’d be together forever!”

Nicola, of course, took joy in the bouquets. “I did all the flowers which was loads of fun, exhausting, but fun. It was incredibly exciting to go to the flower markets and choose whatever I loved! I was like kid in a candy store!”

In keeping with the nod to Scotland, the groom wore his full kilt outfit, and the best man wore his full trews outfit.

Nicola and Steven did have one memorable mistake. “On the way to the church I realised I’d locked our honeymoon suitcases with padlocks but left the keys at home! At the reception I was in the car, and my Dad, Steven and his best man Robbie had our suitcases on the path in Walsh Bay, trying to bash them open with a spanner and hammer they’d borrowed from the venue. It was hilarious!”

Following the church ceremony , Nicola and Steven held an afternoon reception at Sydney Dance Lounge. “For our reception we used Sydney Dance Lounge, which was a complete discovery when we were looking at other venues in the area.  We had an unusual time of 3pm – 7.30pm, and really struggled to find a place that would be flexible for us. But the Sydney Dance Lounge not only had a gorgeous venue, but were really easy to work with. We loved the high ceilings, and industrial feel…and I loved the chairs! The location was stunning too… canapés and entrées by the water was absolutely wonderful.”

Nicola and Steven had their stationery made by Nicola’s dear friend Madi of Little Paper Pantry “Madi at Little Paper Pantry is a dear friend of mine and designed the most beautiful stationery, better than we ever could have imagined, so that was so special. I loved the beautiful little name tags everyone tied onto their chairs at the reception with gorgeous fabric. For the bonbonierre she made little envelopes for the boys with ‘a tasty treat’ on the front and we popped in Scottish tablet Steven had made (a traditional Scottish treat, like fudge), and for the girls she made envelopes with ‘a love story’ on the front, with a mini book she made. I’d written a little story on my blog about our story of meeting, so we edited it and she created a beautiful little gift for the ladies”

Nicola and Steven wandered with their bridal party for more photographs before the evening celebrations began.

A traditional Ceilidh was held for guests in the evening. Nicola recalls “The Ceilidh was held at St Thomas’s Memorial Hall in North Sydney, a beautiful old hall which was perfect for lots of Scottish dancing! My mum made a fruitcake for the reception which we had as well as the ‘proper cake’ which was made by Faye Cahill“. The couple arranged the lolly buffet themselves.” Jo at Wild Fig Catering catered the event.

The first dance was romantic. “We had our first dance at the Ceilidh, to ‘What Can I Do (But Love You)’ by Joy Williams. It was perfect.”

The last moment of the night, was one of Nicola’s favourite memories. “Everybody singing Auld Lang Syne at the end of the Ceilidh while we stood in the middle of the circle was wonderful.”

Congratulations Nicola and Steven! Tank you for allowing us to share your wedding day on Polka Dot Bride! Best of luck on your new life together in Scotland! Thankyou also to by Michelle Fiona Photography for sharing today’s images!

Photographs by Michelle Fiona Photography.

Ava Madison 2011 Collection

by | Bride, Bridesmaids


One of my greatest joys is watching Australian brands emerge, flourish and develop.  Ava Madison has been one of those brands that has grown from a little dream to a beautiful store sending gowns all across the country and the world. I’m pretty excited to share their 2011 collection photos with you today!

The new collection is just as gorgeous as their first – pretty, feminine details like ruffles, floral appliques and bows. gorgeous silks, chiffon and sequin covered fabrics and a huge range of colours. Every gown can be made in a wide range of colours so you can choose the most appropriate shade for your maids. Classic silhouettes mean there’s a wide range of styles (most are even available in short or long length) to choose to suit your bridesmaids – you can even pick different gowns in the same colour way.

Photos by Ava Madison

Vendor Of The Week – Always Fabulous Flowers

by | Blog News, Bride


It’s a fresh week on Polka Dot Bride, which means a fresh week of new inspiration a fresh week of beautiful weddings and a fresh week of great Australian vendors! Let’s get started with a nod to Ms Polka Dot’s Directory members! We’ve come up with some fabulous ideas for the directory of the future and we’re so thankful for the support of our members who help us by supporting us to produce daily content with an Australian flavour. Visit Ms Polka Dot’s Directory and find your florist or photographer or cake maker or dress designer or even event planner- they’re all there (and we’re adding more every week) and they’re all pretty darn wonderful!

Photos by Marcus Bell of Studio Impressions

I love, love love flowers- how is it that something from nature can form such a beautiful focal part of a wedding? It always delights me! Today’s vendor of the week has one of my “in another life” dream careers Always Fabulous Flowers is a Brisbane based florist who gets to work with nature all day every day and create the most beautiful arrangements for marrying couples all over Brisbane. Run by husband and wife team, Dave & Sandee – Always Fabulous Flowers runs out of the couple’s home (so no shopfront interruptions) and Sandee & Dave are committed to making choosing your flowers a fun and inspiring experience. As I found from a quote on their website “our bouquets aren’t just bunches of flowers”. They’re not – Sandee and Dave create beautiful arrangements to suit each wedding and use their almost 20 years of experience to provide you with the service and flowers you dream of.

To learn a little more about Always Fabulous Flowers we asked owners Dave and Sandee five questions in five minutes!

What is your favourite after five drink? Dave and I both love our wines. I’m a Sauvignon Blanc drinker and Dave loves his reds – all time favourite being Henshke Hill of Grace, from South Australia (drunk only on very special occasions).

Your favourite weekend getaway? We work on weekends delivering and setting up wedding flowers – but our goal is one day to stay at Raffles Hotel in Singapore and take the whole week off, not just the weekend.

Favourite restaurant? Era Bistro in Brisbane (especially their degustation menu) or cooking gourmet food here at our home with friends.

What can we find you eating for breakfast on a Sunday morning? If we’re not picking up hire items from the previous day’s weddings, we do enjoy Eggs Benedict with Salmon. Often with a friend’s free range eggs and our own home grown spinach on sour dough from Uncle Bob’s Bakery.

Your favourite wedding story? Having just viewed the Royal Wedding I think this would be our favourite at present — and it was a truly romantic event. Catherine’s bouquet with Lily of the Valley, Hyacinth and white Sweet William was so graceful and stylish and I’m sure will influence future trends in bridal bouquets for the next few years Visit

Always Fabulous Flowers‘s page to find out more about our Vendor Of The Week! Always Fabulous Flowers is a member of Ms Polka Dot’s Directory

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